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Jonah N. Schupbach
conference paper description
Recently, in attempting to account for explanatory reasoning in probabilistic terms, Bayesians have proposed several measures of the degree to which a hypothesis explains a given set of facts. These candidate measures of "explanatory power" are shown to have interesting normative interpretations and consequences. What has not yet been investigated, however, is whether any of these measures are also descriptive of people’s actual explanatory judgments. Here, I present my own experimental work investigating this question. I argue that one measure in particular is an accurate descriptor of explanatory judgments. Then, I discuss some interesting implications of this result for both the epistemology and the psychology of explanatory reasoning.

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